Muslim Millionaire Who Gave Up Fortune To Help Others Dies From Cancer

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Ali Banat, 32, discovered he had terminal cancer three years ago. Instead of spending his millions on himself, he used the money to help others around the world.

A Muslim millionaire who gave away huge sums of his fortune after being diagnosed with cancer three years ago has passed away.

Ali Banat, a 32-year-old businessman from Sydney, Australia, made millions of dollars from the security and electrical company he owned. He was known for living a lavish lifestyle, buying fancy cars and expensive clothes — until he learned he had incurable cancer in October 2015.

That’s when Banat decided he didn’t want to die with all of his fortunes with him. He traveled to Togo, Africa, helping finance the building of houses of worship and establishing a village that is dedicated to helping hundreds of widowed women. He also created a fund called “Muslims Around The World,” which aims to help pay for these projects as well as others, including building a school for 600 orphans.

He didn’t stop with monetary donations.

“[E]ven my clothes, I took them overseas with me and gave them to a lot of people,” Banat said.

The millionaire was interviewed in a short documentary about his beliefs after his diagnosis, explaining how we are meant to help others. He said he even considered his cancer “a gift,” characterizing it in those terms “because Allah has given me a chance to change.”

Banat died last week but lived almost two years longer than what his doctors had predicted he would. He lived a lavish lifestyle, to be sure, but when faced with his own death, he did what few others would have — instead of spending as much of it as he could on himself, Banat thought about how he could leave the world better off than when he lived in it.

Banat deserves to be recognized for his efforts in helping others. We all can learn from his example — maybe not by giving away millions of dollars like he and others have done, but by dedicating ourselves to the principle of leaving this world in a better place for future generations. It doesn’t take millions of dollars to do that, necessarily — just a commitment to do good for others.

Banner/thumbnail image credit: H. Grobe/Wikimedia Commons

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